The Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (RFRA) prohibits the “Government [from] substantially burden[ing] a person’s exercise of religion even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability” unless the Government “demonstrates that application of the burden to the person—(1) is in furtherance of a compelling governmental interest; and (2) is the least restrictive means of furthering that compelling governmental interest.” 42 U. S. C. §§2000bb–1(a), (b). As amended by the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act of 2000 (RLUIPA), RFRA covers “any exercise of religion, whether or not compelled by, or central to, a system of religious belief.” §2000cc–5(7)(A). The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA), which, as relevant here, requires specified employers’ group health plans to furnish “preventive care and screenings” for women without “any cost sharing requirements,” 42 U. S. C. §300gg–13(a)(4). Congress did not specify what types of preventive care must be covered; it authorized the Health Resources and Services Administration, a component of HHS, to decide. Nonexempt employers are generally required to provide coverage for the 20 contraceptive methods approved by the Food and Drug Administration, including the 4 that may have the effect of preventing an already fertilized egg from developing any further by inhibiting its attachment to the uterus. Religious employers, such as churches, are exempt from this contraceptive mandate. HHS also effectively exempted religious nonprofit organizations with religious objections to providing coverage for contraceptive services. Under this accommodation, the insurance issuer must exclude contraceptive coverage from the employer’s plan and provide plan participants with separate payments for contraceptive services without imposing any cost-sharing requirements on the employer, its insurance plan, or its employee beneficiaries. In these cases, the owners of three closely held for-profit corporations have sincere Christian beliefs that life begins at conception and that it would violate their religion to facilitate access to contraceptive drugs or devices that operate after that point. In separate actions, they sued HHS and other federal officials and agencies (collectively HHS) under RFRA and the Free Exercise Clause, seeking to enjoin application of the contraceptive mandate insofar as it requires them to provide health coverage for the four objectionable contraceptives.

READ MORE


128 S.Ct. 2759 (2008) Jack DAVIS, Appellant, v. FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION.   No. 07-320. Supreme Court of United States.   Argued April 22, 2008. Decided June 26, 2008.*2765 Andrew D. Herman, for Appellant. Paul D. Clement, for Appellee. Thomasenia P. Duncan, David Kolker, Associate General Counsel, Kevin Deeley, Assistant General Counsel, Holly J. Baker, Claire N. Rajan, Washington, D.C., Paul D. Clement, Gregory G. Garre, Deputy Solicitor General, Malcolm L. Stewart, Assistant to the Solicitor General, Washington, D.C., for Appellee. Andrew D. Herman, Stanley M. Brand, Brand Law Group, PC, Washington, D.C., Elizabeth F. Getman, Sandler, Reiff & Young, P.C., […]

READ MORE


In this case, we decide whether the First Amendment allows a public-sector union to require objecting nonmem- bers to pay a special fee for the purpose of financing the union’s political and ideological activities.

READ MORE


This case presents the question whether the First Amendment permits a State to compel personal care providers to subsidize speech on matters of public concern by a union that they do not wish to join or support. We hold that it does not, and we therefore reverse the judg­ ment of the Court of Appeals.

READ MORE


A Muslim prisoner challenged a prison policy that denied a religious accommodation to allow a prisoner to grow a half-inch beard. He brought the challenge under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) against members of the staff, including the director, of the Arkansas Department of Correction. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas adopted the position of a magistrate and dismissed with prejudice for failure to state a claim. He appealed. The United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit affirmed. The Supreme Court reversed.

READ MORE


127 S.Ct. 2553 (2007) Jay F. HEIN, Director, White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, et al., Petitioners, v. FREEDOM FROM RELIGION FOUNDATION, INC., et al. No. 06-157. Supreme Court of United States. Argued February 28, 2007. Decided June 25, 2007. *2558 Paul D. Clement, Washington, D.C., for Petitioners. Andrew J. Pincus, for Respondents. *2559 Paul D. Clement, Solicitor General, Washington, D.C., for Petitioners. Giovanna Shay, New Haven, CT, Andrew J. Pincus, Charles A. Rothfeld, Elizabeth G. Oyer, Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw LLP, Washington, DC, Richard L. Bolton, Boardman, Suhr, Curry & Field LLC, Madison, WI, for Respondents. […]

READ MORE


Pioneer Park (Park), a public park in petitioner Pleasant Grove City (City), has at least 11 permanent, privately donated displays, including a Ten Commandments monument. In rejecting the request of respondent Summum, a religious organization, to erect a monument containing the Seven Aphorisms of Summum, the City explained that it limited Park monuments to those either directly related to the City’s history or donated by groups with longstanding community ties. After the City put that policy and other criteria into writing, respondent renewed its request, but did not describe the monument’s historical significance or respondent’s connection to the community. The City rejected the request, and respondent filed suit, claiming that the City and petitioner officials had violated the First Amendment’s Free Speech Clause by accepting the Ten Commandments monument but rejecting respondent’s proposed monument. The District Court denied respondent’s preliminary injunction request, but the Tenth Circuit reversed. Noting that it had previously found the Ten Commandments monument to be private rather than government speech and that public parks have traditionally been regarded as public forums, the court held that, because the exclusion of the monument was unlikely to survive strict scrutiny, the City was required to erect it immediately.

READ MORE